US offers talks with Iran: Iranian FM

Updated: 2011-11-01 22:31


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TEHRAN - Iranian Foreign Minister Ali-Akbar Salehi said Tuesday that the United States has offered talks with the Islamic Republic, the state IRIB TV website reported.

Making the remarks in a joint press conference with his visiting Ghanaian counterpart in Tehran, Salehi said that recently Iran received a letter from the US government in which they expressed the interests to hold talks with Iran.

Salehi did not elaborate further on the content of the letter, but he said that "as usual, the letter (also) contained some contradictory and baseless subjects."

In October, the United States said that Manssor Arbabsayara, a 56-year-old US citizen holding both Iranian and US passports, and Gholam Shakuri, a member of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, were charged with sponsoring and promoting terrorist activities abroad, including a plot to assassinate the Saudi envoy. Arbabsayara was arrested by US authorities, while Shakuri remains in Iran.

The high-profile accusations have brought fresh tensions to the relations between the two arch-foes, with Iran fiercely denying such charges.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said Wednesday that the United States was planning to launch a "virtual embassy" for Iran by the end of this year, which would assist Iranians with online access to information about US visa and facilitation of study procedures in the United States.

The United States broke off diplomatic relations with Iran on April 7, 1980 after a group of Iranian students seized the US embassy in Tehran and captured some 60 US diplomats in 1979, with 52 of them being in captivity for 444 days in the hostage crisis.